I know how awful it is to have your favourite clothing or sheets stained by blood (hopefully caused by some minor problem like a nosebleed or cut and not something more serious or criminal). You may have heard from friends, or read it in articles how difficult a blood stain could be to remove. This might be true, but not with these tips. What I have learned over the years dealing with all kind of stains is that there is a simple and easy cleaning solution for each of them. So, here are, right of my “book of secrets”, a few tricks on how to remove blood stains, whatever their cause.
Cold vs. Warm Water
A common mistake that many people make is to use hot water for removing stains no matter their type. Thoughts like “Hot water cleans better than cold one” will bring you a lot of troubles with blood stains. It is strongly recommended not using hot water to remove blood stains since it will cook the protein in the blood, making the stain permanent. Instead, soak the garment in a litre of cold water with two tablespoons of table salt or ammonia.
Other reliable sources, like London domestic cleaners, advise for tough blood stains to soak fabrics in a mixture of ½ teaspoon of dishwashing soap, 1 tablespoon of ammonia and 1 litre of water.
The success depends on how soon you can tackle the stain. Obviously you will want to address the blood stain as soon as possible. Once the fabric has been soaked (the longer it soaks in cold water, the better), blot the stain with a clean cloth dampened in salt water solution then rinse with cold water.
Blood Stain Removers
Meat tenderizer is an effective blood stain remover because it breaks down proteins. Mix some meat tenderizer with cold water to form a pasty solution, then apply it to the stain and wait for 15 minutes before rinsing.
Hydrogen peroxide, enzyme soap, and ammonia are also commonly used blood stain removers. Step-by-step instructions that involve all of these products can be found here. The method includes everything from the cold water soak to the machine washing. However, it is advisable to test dyed fabrics for colourfastness before treating them with hydrogen peroxide because it acts like bleach.
There are many other tips and tricks for removing blood stains, but the above seems to work best. However, feel free to share your proven methods for getting rid of blood stains in the comments.